Tuesday, October 11, 2011
It's nice to be noticed!
Background: Our district has an initiative going this year to get all teachers using their district-provided teacher webpage as the central point of communication for parents and students. This way, parents and students don't have to remember where to go for information about any class; they just have to go to the school's website and click on the teacher's name to find out about that class. I got "ahead of the game" this summer at tech camp with learning how to make my webpage, and I worked really hard to make it a visually appealing, informative place where parents, students and other teachers can find information about my classes, important links, and downloadable resources. It's mostly for parents, as I use my class Moodle sites for student resources and activities, but now the kids know there's a link to Moodle from my webpage, and many of them have been getting there that way instead of having to remember how to get to Moodle. It's a lot easier for their pre-teen brains, and it makes a nice communication link for parents, so I've been happy with it.
This morning at the staff meeting, our principal talked about the teacher webpages and how everyone is supposed to try to have theirs set up by the end of the month. (Most people didn't go to tech camp, so a lot of them don't even know how to start creating theirs!) He's starting to use Moodle to provide resources to us since there's never enough time in the staff meeting to go in-depth with anything, so there's now information on creating webpages in the staff Moodle. I love to go to sites as I'm being told about them, so I was on Moodle clicking around during the meeting, and as I scrolled through the description of suggested and required content for our webpages, I almost jumped out of my seat! Right there, under "Model Webpages", was my name! The very first one! The only one that was listed as an "overall" example, not just an example of one component! I think I may have emitted a small giggle/squeak of happiness and made a small joyful hop in my seat... sometimes the little kid in me just squeezes out! (And that little kid is a straight-A, perfectionistic, "gifted" student who LIVES to work hard on something and be praised about it!)
As someone who "just" teaches an elective, and travels between 3 buildings at that, I often feel like I just slide along under the radar. There are days that I wonder, "Does anybody even notice what I'm doing, how I'm pouring my heart and soul into these classes for these kids?" Today, somebody noticed. And it was really nice! It's happened before, but never very often, and frequently as the result of a required observation. Today was just out of the blue! I hadn't even mentioned my webpage to my principal. I didn't even know he knew I had made it. This meant that he went and looked at everyone's webpages and found mine and liked it! Wow! I mean, of course my hard work on the webpage has been validated by the fact that parents and students and teachers have been using it to access resources and contact me... but that little girl in me is just SO excited and proud that my principal noticed! And he liked it! And he told everybody that it's a model!
A nice bright spot in a week full of craziness -- a band board meeting that lasted 2 1/2 hours last night, Spirit Week at school with a pep rally tomorrow (I always love Spirit Week but it's adding to the craziness of everything else right now!), parent-teacher conferences on Thursday evening, and 14 college kids from my row in band coming to eat at our house on Friday!